Thanks to DreamWorks, I was lucky enough to be able to participate in a press round table interview with The Help’s Octavia Spencer. Octavia Spencer was honest, funny, and genuine. It was an honor to be able to interview her!
Who did you enjoy working with the most?
Octavia Spencer: There was such a diverse cast in age and everything, it is hard for me to choose. Viola Davis and Jessica Chastain enriched my performance and have enriched my life that it would be like choosing sisters. They mean so much to me. And working with Emma Stone, Ahna O’Reilly, Bryce Dallas Howard, and Allison Janney, were the consummate professionals. I have an affinity for all of my cast mates.
How are you like Minny?
Octavia Spencer: I think that when Kathryn Stockett was writing The Help, she wanted a stark contrast to Aibileen (who was inspired by her own childhood caregiver) who is very poised and has a decorum. Minny is not. She is short, feisty, and is a ball of fire. I am definitely short and I am definitely a ball of fire. And depending on what time of day you get me without coffee or a snack, I can be pretty feisty. And I hope that I am as loyal of a friend as Minny.
How did you meet the director Tate Taylor?
Octavia Spencer: We both worked as production assistants on A Time to Kill. Tate was a production assistant in the production office, and I was a production assistant in the extra’s casting office. We became fast friends.
What is the message that you want teenagers to learn from The Help?
Octavia Spencer: The message of The Help transcends race. This movie is about empowerment, and finding your voice and standing on principle and what you believe in. The message is not just geared toward women, it is geared toward people. First and foremost I would say that this movie is about finding your voice, and standing up for what you believe in. Society bullied these women and it took them working together to be one strong force, there is power in numbers, but the power has to come from within you. The Help’s tag line is Change Begins with a Whisper. The whisper starts inside, but it takes courage to utter it to someone else. I say find that courage to utter whatever it is you are going through, and you will possibly find a helping hand to pull you along.
What is your favorite character that you have played?
Octavia Spencer: Minny is my favorite character. My second favorite character would be the INS agent Constance from Ugly Betty.
What is your next role?
My next gig is finding my next gig. I really want to promote this one. I am really excited for people to see it.
Make sure to take your mom, sister, and friends to see this moving movie that is filled with humor, hope, and the ability to create change. Also bring plenty of tissues, there will not be a dry eye in the theater. The Help opens in theaters August 10th!
Thank you DreamWorks and Octavia Spencer for this amazing opportunity!
Disclosure: I was provided preview tickets to The Help. Thoughts and opinions are my own.
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